Columbus Day 2022

Whether as Columbus Day or as Indigenous Peoples’ Day, it is an official day off for Federal and Postal employees.  Does it matter what and how we ascribe it?  It has been many centuries since the voyage of Columbus; each child born today, and for many centuries past, can hardly be blamed for the ill-deeds of past generations.

That being said — if we are blameless — is it merely in the beliefs to which we identify, which marks the differences between us?  Certainly, for a Native American, it is irritating to hear someone claim that “such and such discovered America”; for, by definition, a land already inhabited cannot claim to have been discovered except by the inhabitants themselves.

But the argument is that the present society into which people are currently born, cannot possibly be blamed for the genocidal extermination of its indigenous peoples; and so, what can it mean as to whether or not one calls it “Columbus Day” or “Indigenous Peoples’ Day”?

The counter to that, of course, is that the reservations into which Native Americans were forced to accept, still reverberates with current loss of water rights, mineral rights, etc., and is a constant reminder of what was lost.  And it may be of some restoration of dignity to insist upon historical accuracy, where insistent inaccuracy is the basis for acrimonious inter-cultural relationships.

Yet, in this Post-Factual Universe where the Western approach of the Correspondence Theory of Truth once prevailed but no longer dominates, is there even a difference with a distinction?

For most, where the meaningful divide is between those who are overworked, barely able to make a living, and are stressed to their limits — which constitute the greater majority of individuals — and those who live a fairly carefree life of leisure (the greater minority of people), the fact of a day off, whatever you want to call it, is what seems to mean anything.

And for Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who can enjoy the day to spend with their families and loved ones, Happy Columbus Day and Happy Indigenous Peoples’ Day, 2022.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill
Lawyer exclusively representing Federal and Postal employees to secure their Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

 

OPM Disability Retirement Help: The Periscope

It is an interesting object; and allows for a capability beyond the normal and direct human eyesight.  As an instrument used to observe, it allows for getting around obstacles which prevent direct line-of-sight observation, and in its more advanced invented forms, utilizing prisms and advanced fiber optics, can view the world and its intended object from a vantage point unobserved by the viewed.

These days, of course, with miniature cameras and microchip technology, perhaps the periscope is an anachronism.  The purpose, however, always remains the same: To gain information through observation, without being detected.

Federal employees who suffer from a medical condition often have to use the “periscope” approach — of gutting through each day at the expense of one’s own health; of smiling when the upturned lips should reveal a downturned frown or a grimace of pain; and all the while, the Federal Agency is saying you are doing a great job, your health deteriorates behind the periscope of unobserved medical conditions.

At some point, perhaps someone points to the “periscope” and says, “Are you okay?”  This is a rare instance.  Instead, more often than not, there comes a critical juncture in one’s life where the debilitating medical condition no longer allows for lack of observation, and that is the point when the periscope is seen, and everyone scratches their collective heads and declares: Yes, yes, it was obvious all along.

And that is the point when the Federal or Postal worker needs to consider filing for FERS Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Contact a FERS Disability Attorney who specializes in OPM Disability Retirement Law, and begin the process of seeing the world not through the vision of a periscope, but with your own wide and opened eyes.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill
Lawyer exclusively representing Federal and Postal employees to secure their Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

 

OPM Disability Retirement Law: Confusion and What to Do

Confusion naturally follows upon a new and challenging circumstance.  That is not an anomaly; it is not a negative reflection upon a person’s ability or capacity; and it should not be taken as a sign of some inherent weakness.

We like to think that we are prepared for every eventuality, but even the wisest amongst us can use some guidance.  This has become a “specialized” world, where no one can any longer be that “jack-of-all-trades” person.

Modern life has become complicated beyond the capacity of any single individual, and the loss of extended “support systems” — because of fractured family relationships, the incursion and influence of Social media beyond their healthy originations; and the sense of isolation despite the greater freedoms we enjoy — makes for increased confusion in the midst of so much information available through the internet.

The self-contradiction is inexplicable: The greater the availability of massive amounts of information “out there” in the electronic morass of the internet, the lesser knowledge attained and wisdom displayed.  Perhaps it has to do with the loss of need for memorization; perhaps because of over-specialization; but whatever the reasons, we have become less knowledgeable.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, confusion and what to do is a problem which must be faced.

Contact an OPM Disability Retirement Attorney who specializes in OPM Disability Retirement Law, and consider the next steps in confronting the challenges being faced when a medical condition begins to impact your ability and capacity to continue in your Federal or Postal job.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill
OPM Disability Attorney

 

Federal OPM Disability Retirement Law under FERS: Humming Along

Or, perhaps a person who is “whistling along”; either way, it is an indication of contentment.  People don’t even seem to have the time to “hum along”, anymore.  One doesn’t do that on Social Media; there is never any time on Zoom; and when there is ever an encounter in a public place, everyone is too busy and in a rush to be “humming along”.

And so the phrase is left as a metaphorical anomaly — of a life in contented fashion, a sense of self-satisfaction which is rarely seen these days.  It was perhaps also a concept applied to a well-oiled engine — of a vehicle “humming along”, indicating that all mechanical elements were working properly, and there was no fear of a sudden breakdown.

We can “hum along” in life; where things are going fairly smoothly; there is a sense of contentment, and even moments of “happiness” as a byproduct of our accomplishments.  Medical conditions, of course, can disrupt that characterization; it is an unfortunate but very human element which impacts everyone’s life.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition is interrupting and impeding the “humming along” scenario, contact an OPM Medical Attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law.

Humming along is a state of being; a medical condition can interfere with that sense of contentment; and where the collision occurs between one’s ability and capacity to continue in one’s Federal or Postal career, it may be time to consider preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Lawyer

 

Disability Retirement for Federal Gov. Employees: Something Less

This is a country that has preached abundance for multiple decades, a couple of centuries, and certainly for a lengthy run on the concept: Expect more, not something less.  It has been touted as the flagship of opportunity, a place where dreams come true and hope abounds.  There has never been a view towards something less, for something less is an unacceptable concept to endure.

Commercials and television ads tout that we can “have it all”; that with a pill, things will be better; that if you buy a certain product, magic occurs; and if you whiten your teeth, everyone will like you better.  But what if life occurs where something less must be accepted?

Federal Disability Retirement pays 60% of the average of one’s highest 3 consecutive years of service for the first year, then 40% every year thereafter.  It is something less than what a Federal or Postal employee makes, but certainly something more than “nothing”.  It then actually does allow you to make something more — for, on top of the 60% the first year and 40% every year thereafter, you are allowed to go out into the private sector and make up to 80% of what your former Federal or Postal position currently pays.

Of course, your medical condition has already made you realize that life has to be adapted to with something less — something less than your full health; but Federal Disability Retirement does allow for something more, as well: Of a career beyond the Federal government.

Consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and obtain the counsel and guidance of something more in dealing with a medical condition which has already resulted in something less — in terms of health and your ability to perform all of the essential elements of your Federal or Postal job.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

Attorney Representation for OPM Disability Claims: The facade

We all do it; but the fact that all engage in it does not mean that the quality of what occurs behind the mask is equal in kind.  What betrays the workings of that which lurks behind the Noh mask?  Does the backstabber ever recognize the evil that is perpetrated any more than the Wizard behind the curtain believed that something untoward was being accomplished?

In architecture, a facade is the outward appearance or frontage that represents the initial encounter, entrance or first impression when approaching or entering; it is a neutral term in that it doesn’t connote or denote anything beyond that which it is — the first impression of the outward appearance.  But when that same term is applied to human beings or other contexts, it takes on a secondary implication of doubt, motive, underlying processes or even evil intent that is deliberately being concealed for the nefarious winds that need cover.

We all wear them; some are more adept at maintaining it in order to conceal and veil; while others can only establish it for a short period, then confess to all that nothing beneath was meant to harm.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who carry a facade in order to conceal the medical condition that continues to debilitate, deteriorate and prevent the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, the strain upon one’s psyche can be enormous and trying.

Over time, the facade must by necessity begin to crumble, to fade, to unravel and reveal; it is the inevitability that is often so fatiguing.  When the critical point of intersection occurs — where the priority of the medical condition surpasses the need to maintain appearances — it may be time to consider preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be filed through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset.

At some point, we all have to become “real”, and the facade that hides the face of a building does so without concealing anything precisely because there is no “there” behind the face; but the human being that puts on the Noh mask cannot for long maintain the facade that conceals the human suffering within.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Retirement for Mental or Physical Incapacity: Of mice and things

In the early morning hours or in the late twilight of night when everyone else is fast asleep, of mice and things scurrying about tells of a world beyond the days where we awaken and watch.  We all have a tendency to anthropomorphize upon a world we otherwise would fail to understand, and projecting our own characteristics upon another species has always been what we cannot resist.

Of mice — do they run about when everyone else is away because of fear, or because they, too, love the quietude of a period when all except the insomniacs and burglars tiptoe in shadows of darkness where the innocent dare not trample upon?

Sometimes, in the rush from hiding place to food source, the mouse will pause, lift up on its hind legs, look about, nibble a bit, then off again; and when they become bold enough to actually stare and look directly at the master of the house, you know that it is time to bring out the cheese and the traps, for they have exceeded their welcome and are likely becoming too comfortable in a home that they are unwelcome.

And what of the “things”?  Well, there are mice, and then of course, centipedes and spiders, and cousins of mice, and other things.  They are the ones who go “bump” in the night.  Are we like them?  If a greater master were to look upon us like we do of mice and things, would that Grand Wizard think similar thoughts?  That if we scurry about in fear and try and remain anonymous and unobtrusive, we would be left alone; but if we became bold in our unwelcomed status, a trap would be set for us and we would be cast aside into the oblivion outside of the walls of our own making?

Isn’t that how the injured Federal or Postal worker feels when a medical condition continues to prevent the Federal or Postal worker from performing all of the essential elements of the Federal or Postal worker’s position?  Such a Federal or Postal worker begins to feel like the mouse that scurries about trying to survive, but once he or she gets noticed, the Federal Agency or the Postal Service begins to set traps, to put the pressure on and proceed to ostracize and get rid of the pesky things.

Fortunately, Federal and Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition have somewhat more protections than those accorded to creatures small and large, of mice and things.

Preparing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, is one such “protection” that allows the Federal or Postal employee to move beyond the workplace harassment and attempts to remove and terminate, thereby ending a career where one has invested one’s life to prolong.

What the Federal or Postal employee does not want to do, is to end up like those creatures that go bump-in-the-night — of mice and things — by failing for access all available benefits, and especially a Federal Disability Retirement annuity that can secure one’s future and allow for one to focus upon the important things in life, like one’s health.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Disability Retirement Representation: Hope of escape

Perhaps it is a weekly lottery ticket purchases; or the novel that is periodically worked on but never gets completed; or even a notion that there is a distant relative who will one day meet mortality and leave a legacy of a magnitude beyond the capacity to exhaust; but of whatever dreams, fantasies or mathematical improbabilities, the mere hope of escape is often the fingernail that allows for sanity to remain, for motivation to continue to abide, and of a spark of incentive to spur onward and forward.

It is only when the cornered animal is left with no route of escape, or when an enemy battalion can neither hope to survive nor be allowed to surrender, that an unimaginable end may be considered.

Hope is the flame that abides for humanity’s safeguarding of happiness; of escape, it is something we all do, and often to the detriment of relationships that we have.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from various medical conditions, such that those medical conditions continue to prevent or otherwise impede the Federal or Postal employee’s ability, capacity and resolve to perform all of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, the hope is always there that the medical condition will resolve itself, or that the doctors will come up with a new cure, or perhaps even that a miracle will occur that tonight’s dream will awaken to a pain-free tomorrow.

Short of that, however, the hope of escape means that the medical condition will continue, but the inability to perform one or more of the essential elements of the Federal or Postal job must be discontinued either through (a) resolution of the medical condition (unlikely), (b) accommodation by the Federal Agency or the Postal Service of the medical condition such that the Federal or Postal employee may continue to work (again, unlikely), (c) resignation or termination because of excessive use of leave, inability to maintain a regular work schedule, deterioration of the medical condition or being placed on a PIP (likely), or (d) file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset (inevitably).

The hope of escape still abides; it is up to the Federal or Postal employee to initiate the hope by consulting with an attorney who specializes in preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, thus empowering a potential escape from the vicious cycle of work-related harassment, deterioration of one’s health, and the constant concern for the security of one’s future.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Medical Retirement from Federal Employment: The negative of a photograph

In this digital age, the disappearance of the negative in photography is quite appropriate; for, this is an age that has attempted to expunge everything negative, both in form and in substance.  That thin strip of plastic film that was always retained, and carefully coupled with the “positive” prints, was preserved with the idea that the more valued sets of prints may become lost, distributed or otherwise disseminated, and in that event, so long as the negative of the original was retained, more could be printed out.

Just before the digital age, there were “do-it-yourself” machines – monstrosities that received the film, processed them and spit out two-prints each; or is that just the faulty memory of this writer? The double-prints were meant to allow for giving of one and keeping the other, just in case grandma or grandpa wanted one of those cute pictures where everyone simultaneous said the universal word: “Cheese!”

Yet, the concept of the negative still retains some fascination, despite its obsolescence in the modernity of the digital age; for, it is the reverse order of reality, where the lightness of images retains the darkness of reflection, and vice versa, because of the chemical sensitivity in processing the film.

And who among us recalls the ghoulish search when we actually did want to get another print made – of searching through various negatives, seeing the hollow images of figures staring back, trying to discern whether multiple negatives that appeared similar but not quite the same could be the one, by matching the angle of the face, the tilt of the head, or some mysterious figure in the background not shown in the original?

Have we all had that experience – where there is something that appears in the negative but not in the print, and attribute it to the ghostly mysteries that somehow and by mistake captured the supernatural world otherwise banished from this day and age?

The romantic world of the unknown has now vanished, along with the negative of a photograph; now, we are left with the virtual reality of a mundane universe, with nothing left for our imaginations.  For, the negative of a photograph is the mystery itself that always spurred us onward and upward, trying always to achieve the next level of accomplishment.

For the Federal employee and U.S. Postal worker who suffers from a medical condition, such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal positional duties, the concept of the negative of a photograph should be quite familiar; for, once upon a time, that image beheld on that strip of plastic was the “real” you, preserved and retained for posterity as the valuable essence of a being otherwise forgotten.

Federal agencies and Postal facilities only care about the print that stays forever in the same pose and manner, unchangeable and forever identical.  The mere fact that a medical condition has “changed” a Federal or Postal employee is somehow rejected by the Federal agency and U.S. Postal Service, and that is why filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management becomes so important.

For, just like the negative of a photograph, it is the medical condition in its negative aspects that always seems to be the sole focus of the Federal or Postal facility in determining the worth of an individual.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS & CSRS Disability Retirement: A Series of Refinements

Age does not necessarily result in greater wisdom; rather, for many, it merely sits in a puddle of stale intransigence.  As well, palpable advancement on a linear scale occurs only in the context of the capacity to make progress, but remains in a state of limbo without an intermediate causal impetus.  Throughout life, it is the refinements made which make for differentiation.  A minor tweak here; a self-reproachful reminder here; for, very few begin the journey needing a complete overhaul, but merely a readjustment and cleaning of those spark-plugs gone bad.

Thus, when a medical condition hits an individual, it often becomes a crisis of identity; for, throughout, up until the point of realizing that a change in career may be necessitated by the unexpected health condition, the thoughts and plans always included a series of minor refinements, and nothing more.

But Federal Disability Retirement for Federal and Postal employees is, in fact, nothing more than a greater series of minor refinements; it is the focus upon the change which transforms it into a traumatic event of sorts.  For, in the end, it is precisely those series of refinements made throughout the course of one’s life, which has prepared one for the vicissitudes wrought by unexpected circumstances; throughout life, we prepare for the next storm; wisdom is merely the ability to recognize the inevitability of change, and through a series of refinements, to adjust accordingly.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who must file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal employee or U.S. Postal worker is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, the need to file an OPM Disability Retirement application through OPM is often looked upon as a crisis-embroiled act.  And, indeed, it is certainly a troublesome venture, one fraught with headaches, obstacles and administrative confusion; but in the end, it is a step necessitated by circumstances beyond one’s control, and merely another in a series of refinements required by life’s bumps and bridges, and one which requires some amount of wisdom in going forward into the bureaucratic nightmare of OPM.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire